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NNA Writes to Regulatory Policy Committee

The New Nicotine Alliance consumer charity has written to the Regulatory Policy Committee to express its concerns about the Impact Assessment for the Tobacco and Vapes Bill

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The New Nicotine Alliance (NNA) consumer charity has written to the Regulatory Policy Committee to express its concerns about the Impact Assessment for the Tobacco and Vapes Bill. The NNA says that it believes that the impact assessment “does not adequately reflect the balance of benefits and detriments and will have the effect of supporting legislation for which there is an extremely weak rationale and major scope for unintended consequences.”

The charity states: “We wish to comment on the Impact Assessment for Tobacco and Vapes Bill and the RPC’s “green rating” for this analysis. We believe the fundamentals are flawed and that the assessment does not provide legislators with a reasonable or informative account of the legislation's costs and benefits. Consumers are an often overlooked stakeholder group, and we wish to register our concerns.”

The New Nicotine Alliance is Britain’s leading and only charity promoting the nicotine consumer’s voice. It seeks to educate and inform on subjects such as the low-risk alternatives to cigarettes such as vapes, nicotine pouches, snus and heated tobacco. It is completely independent from the tobacco, pharmaceutical and vaping industries, staffed by volunteers – most of whom are ex-smokers thanks to alternative nicotine products.

The letter to the Regulatory Policy Committee is forensic in its analysis, constituting a very powerful document.

In a nutshell,” says Clive Bates, a signatory to the letter, “the new SFG anti-smoking measures miss the critical at-risk target population - which is people born well before 2009 still smoking as they enter their 40s or the 6.3 million adults (≥18) who currently smoke. The people born after 2009 are unlikely ever to become seriously sick from smoking; very few will still be smoking as they turn 40 in 2049 because the world will be very different in 2049. And all will have the option and familiarity to switch to safer products well before. The Impact Assessment contains a number of bizarre charts implying no progress on smoking without the measure and 100% compliance with the measure.”

He continues: “The real problem is that the hostile policies on vaping do adversely affect the main at-risk population: current adult smokers. Because smoking is so much more dangerous than vaping, and the smoking risks are more imminent in the at-risk population, only small adverse changes in smoking arising from anti-vaping measures would completely blow the cost-benefit case apart.  That may be one reason why no quantification was included. Any health benefits arising from youth anti-vaping measures are likely to be distant and minor and, therefore, count for very little (these assessments use discounting to deflate future costs or benefits). Not only that, they are likely to be offset by the loss of substantial benefits arising from youth vaping among those who would otherwise have smoked.”

Read the damning letter here.


Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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